Saudi Arabia entered a new era yesterday with the approval of an ambitious plan that includes almost all sectors. It aims, in particular, to diversify the economy and utilise new sources of income other than oil by 2030.
The economic reform plan known as “Saudi Vision 2030” was approved by the Saudi Arabian Council of Ministers in a session during which the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Salman bin Abdulaziz called on male and female citizens to work together to realise the plan which he described as “ambitious”. King Salman also stressed that since coming to power he has pursued “comprehensive development emanating from our religious fundamentals, investing our country’s capabilities and potentialities, benefiting from our country’s location, and its characteristics of resources and advantages to achieve a better future for the country and its people along with adherence to our pure religion and maintaining the originality of our society and its basic fundamentals.” He also expressed his hope that Saudi Arabia would become a “model for the world”.
On his part, the Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Nayef bin Abdulaziz said that everyone in Saudi Arabia must get involved in implementing the ““Saudi Vision 2030” that will come to fruition with the help of Allah the Almighty in the coming years.”
The Deputy Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman outlined the new plan and stressed that it represents a road map for achieving Saudi Arabia’s goals for development. Prince Mohammed bin Salman added that “Vision 2030”
is a starting point for a stronger and better Saudi that will achieve everybody’s ambitions. He continued by saying that the aim of “Vision 2030” is not to lower the price of oil; rather, it aims to take advantage of the abilities that are not being made use of.
Prince Mohammed bin Salman also explained that a number of programmes will be announced in the coming months. The first of these programmes will concern national transformation which will seek to achieve the goals of the plan in the services sector.
The Deputy Crown Prince also talked about the company Aramco which he said would be part of the “Saudi Vision 2030” and added that the plan includes the sale of less than 5 percent of Aramco shares through an initial public offering (IPO) in order to achieve a number of objectives, the most notable being transparency. He also mentioned that “People used to be unhappy that files and data of Aramco are undeclared, unclear and not transparent. Today they will be transparent. If Aramco gets IPO-ed that means it has to announce its statements of accounts”.